Having started to commute to work at least twice a week initially by mountain bike, I wondered if there was a better way. A week or two of research I began to wonder if lying down on the job seemed like a good idea. Though not sure if I would like it I didn’t spend a fortune, I bought a “Stick,” a USS 24 speed recumbent bike from a shop in Norfolk called Power & Leisure. Laced with various goodies to make the commute (a 25 mile round trip mostly on country lanes from my town in rural Aberdeenshire to Aberdeen city) as easy as possible. The trip to work is over many a hill and finding my recumbent legs was a challenge. It took me a month of twice a week to get the same time as on my MTB, the time is now getting better!
The photos show it off with the accessory bag on the back of the seat and a double pannier, mud guards (fenders), mirror (which I find essential as I cannot turn my head far enough to see behind me and guessing is too dangerous), also attached is our Cargo II trailer which we use for some of our shopping trips to the local supermarket. So far I have upgraded the reat deraileur to a Shimano Deore LX and Shimano SPD pedals (what a difference they made), in time I would like to upgrade the rear wheel and hub but for now it does okay.
At work I am the CycleScheme co-ordinator, this is a UK govenment scheme to promote the use of bike for commuting, where the employees benefit from up to 50% off the retail price by the use of a salary sacrifice system. More details at www.cyclescheme.co.uk. Because of this I feel its important to my colleagues that I lead from the front and how better than using a recumbent as it promotes lots of questions about whether its “safer” “comfortable” “not for me” or whatever… it definately gets a lot of attention and starts many discussions about cycling so I think its working.
The “Stick” has now covered nearly 300 miles most of which have been commuting and I hope to continue to use it through most of the year hence the fenders. —Iain